Thursday, 24 December 2015

The Trendologist 2015 Gift Guide: The Foodie

Finding gifts for your nearest and dearest (let alone those frenemies you drew from a Secret Santa picking) is hard. Securing actually stylish presents? Even harder. Welcome to the annual Trendologist Gift Guide, the chicest guide to finding presents for those super niche people in your life.

You may like trying new restaurants and dishes, but the foodie in your life is borderline obsessed with food. She knows the difference between taragon and cayenne, plus she's tried the most abstract cuisine before you've even read about it. Sure, it may be annoying to pause after each bite and analyze all the ingredients in each dish ("I wonder which olive grove these were grown in," she contemplates when you -- and most people-- couldn't care less), but the fact of the matter is that you always eat well with your cuisine connoisseur. Show your gastronome just how much your appreciate her quirky food habits with gifts that will tug at her heart strings -- and taste buds.

The French Women Don't Get Fat Cookbook by Mireille Guiliano, about $15: Giving a foodie a cookbook for Christmas isn't very groundbreaking; however, when it comes to tasty tomes, it doesn't get chicer than Mireille Guiliano's "The French Women Don't Get Fat Cookbook." From fashion to food, most people aspire to have a typical French woman's je ne nais quoi, and this book allows your recipient to eat like her dream woman (all without gaining some additional pounds). And don't think of this pick as Weight Watchers with a couple ouis  thrown into the mix: this book perfectly blends enjoying food with  keeping that willowy frame. And with everything from chocolate mousse to carbonara inside, this is a book that any foodie will readily support.
Sperlari Italian Gianduja Zanzibar, $6: Forget those Godiva chocolates. Anyone with a sweet tooth will appreciate any mall bought-- or, for that matter, pharmacy-bought chocolates--  but what they really want? A milky dessert that will leave them begging for more. Created in Italy, Gianduja mixes a little bit of chocolate with hazelnuts from the Langhe hills south of Turin. But in non-epicure terms, think of this bar as a more luxurious, solidified version of Nutella, which will instantly be a crowd-pleaser this holiday season. As an added bonus, this will make an excellent stocking stuffing for even the most novice foodies in your life. 
Atom Art Serving Bowl, $24: For any munchie maniac, decorative bowls are the art books for museum rats: there's no such thing as too many, plus they make for an expressive (and extensive) collection. Dishwasher and microwave safe, this feminine bowl from Anthropologie is perfect for both reheating last night's take out order and stowing popcorn for your latest Netflix binge. The silhouette is simple; however, the girly mint green pattern and marigold trim are sure to add some fun to any stodgy shelf, not to mention it's porcelain material will last your recipient may years to come.
Denim Cross-Back Apron, $109: Anyone who is obsessed with all courses from appetizer to desserts is most likely to dabble in the kitchen. If you hear your favorite foodie lament about her cooking woes, gift her this super sleek apron. Inspired by Dutch iterations and hand-sewn in New York, the urban denim take on the apron is perfect for your frills-free giftee, plus its sleekness is way more Michelin Star than Magnolia Cupcakes. And with a criss-cross back, two pockets and a loop for a dish rag, this pick is equal parts practical and stylish.
Tom Dixon Plum Ice Bucket, $209: Some say that food can be art; however, there's no reason why the things you store your most important ingredients in can't also be art. Take this ice bucket from Tom Dixon, for example. Made of mouth-blown glass,  this is a far cry from those dinky ones you find at an all-inclusive resort. Whether in use or capped with the hand-painted copper lid, this piece will become a standout accessory on any bar cart, and double as a piece of unique art when idle. And that, ladies and gents, is a gifting win-win. 

Rifle Paper Co Citrus Recipe Box, $34:   A tell-tale sign of being a major gourmand? Compulsively swapping recipes with fellow foodies. While erasing that "Recipes" note on her smartphone is just one false tap away, giving your recipient a cutesy recipe box is a no brainer. This one from Rifle Paper Co., for example, comes with its own set of recipe cards, which will make it that easier for your giftee to transfer her digital notes to paper. Plus, the funky, retro print and tin exterior offers a vintage vibe to any counter.
A.J Oil Drizzler, $78: This season, tell your favorite foodie to say goodbye to those plastic olive oil containers and hello to a sleeker model. Just like salt and pepper, oil is something your giftee will have in her kitchen at all times. But instead of hiding that generic bottle in the depths of her pantry, this cool pick from A.J will make her want to showcase her oil for all to see.  This minimalist glass shape is frills-free, but the cheery yellow hue will add some much-needed energy to a cooking staple.

Olympia Provisions Salami of the Month Club, $145: The best part about being a self-declared foodie? Having an expert opinion of different types of cuisines and essential foods. While you may be inclined to roll your eyes at those cliched "Fruit of the Month" or "Wine of the Month" clubs, you have to admit that they do help any inspiring foodie become more knowledgable. However, spice it up this holiday season with Olympia Provision's Salami o the Month Club. Each month, members will receive about 4.5 oz of the prized meat along with some tasting notes. As Joey Tribbiani once said, "Here come the meat sweats."

Laguiole en Aubrac Ebony Salad Servers, $398The secret to a chic kitchen isn't just filling your refrigerator and party with the most decadent-- and Instagram-worthy -- ingredients: using stylish wares is another must. A combination of  a stainless steel fork and spoon combination as well as ebony handles, this set from Laguiole en Aubrac requires over 100 steps to manufacture. Translation? You know you're gifting your foodie long-lasting tools. And lucky for you, this set is definitely versatile to blend in nicely with any kitchen. 

What are you getting your favorite foodie this season? Sound off below.


Monday, 21 December 2015

The Trendologist 2015 Gift Guide: The Fashion Girl

Finding gifts for your nearest and dearest (let alone those frenemies you drew from a Secret Santa picking) is hard. Securing actually stylish presents? Even harder. Welcome to the annual Trendologist Gift Guide, the chicest guide to finding presents for those super niche people in your life.

Buying presents for anyone is a challenge, but consider gifting that fashion girl in your life to be ten times worse. Not only is her well-curated wardrobe a tough act to follow, but everything you think of as cool and a viable present she's probably had for at least six months already. But before you give up or opt for a gift card to Bergdorf Goodman (which she'll like, but where's the creativity in that?), feast your eyes on ten gifts that any trendsetter will adore.

Altuzarra Ghianda Knot Small Saddle Bag. $2,195:  Buying accessories for the fashion girl in your life is an easy win: they're versatile and unless a gift is absolutely horrendous, she'll find a way to wear it. However, getting her an "it" accessories from a top-knotch designer will have her worshipping you for years to come, all while silently complimenting your excellent taste. Handbags are new for New York designer (and fashion royalty) Joseph Altuzarra, and this saddle bag is pretty amazing (sticker shock aside, of course). Not only is this purse made of super  soft leather, the tassel will instantly elevate any ensemble, plus navy is a more fetching neutral than a stodgy black or grey. 

Diptyque Sapin Candle, from $35 for 2.4 oz: Not looking to drop thousands of dollars on your chicest friend? We don't blame you, but consider this festive candle an equally luxe (yet affordable) option. If candle brands had catty, high school stereotypes, Diptyque's would be the cool, popular and well-dressed one that everyone wanted to be. Founded by a trio of artful Parisians -- interior designer Christiane Gautrot, painter Demond  Knox- Leet and director Yves Coueslant -- Diptyque boasts an array of inviting, unique and fancy scents. Your fashion-forward friend probably has loads of the brand's traditional scents her disposal, but Sapin is a more seasonal blend that she'll also love. With a base of pine trees and hints of mandarin, this one provides a whole new take on a holiday scent.

Cos Long Contrast Panel Shirt, $99: Here's a best kept secret about most fashion girls: the ones who eat, breathe and sleep fashion don't usually parade around in extravagant full looks from the latest runway show. Instead, they tend to keep their daily ensemble simple with quality, modern pieces. Add to your recipient's minimal wardrobe with this top from Cos. At first glance, it looks like an average button-down, but the smallest details -- pointed collar, graduated hemline and streamlined silhouette -- pack on the punch and will easily elevate any ensemble. Plus, it can be worn with essentially anything, so expect your recipient to stock up on this shirt in the months to come.
Where's Karl?: A Fashion-Forward Parody, $16Forget what you saw in The Devil Wears Prada,  having a style and a sense of humor need not be mutually exclusive. This season, bring those two together with fashion's fun take on "Where's Waldo?": "Where's Karl?". While you and your recipient are pillaging through the pages to find the Chanel creative director, don't be surprised to also spot illustrated incarnations of other tastemakers: Anna Wintour, Bill Cunningham, Carine Roitfeld and Choupette, Lagerfeld's cat, all make appearances in this cheeky tome. As an added bonus, it will be a wonderful addition to her ever-growing stack of art books.  Translation? Picking up this present is pure genius. 
Mizuki Sea of Beauty White Pearl Earrings, $680Getting a girl jewelry for the holidays is a no-brainer, but for a fashion girl? The stakes have gotten about ten times higher. With a jewelry armoire already filled with everything from topaz and tourmaline, finding something that will truly wow her is not an easy feat. Luckily, these earrings from Mizuki are the perfect blend between traditional and modern. Pearls are something that every woman can wear with a slew of outfits, and the thin (yet dramatic) dangling structure prevents these from looking too mumsy-- not to mention that the tiny white diamond accents make these comparable to expensive fine jewelry while being reasonably priced. And that, dear reader, is an accessories win-win. 
For Restless Sleepers Printed Pajama Shirt, $699: As stylist-turned- designer Rachel Zoe once said, "Glamor is a state of mind." Most style savants heed this advice and strive to live their lives as fashionably as possible around the clock. It's hard to compete with closets full of daytime attire, eveningwear and accessories; however, a super swanky set of jammies will not only be a viable addition, it'll also allow her slumbers to be a stylish affair. This silk set from Francesca Ruffini's For Rest Sleepers will ensure a cozy slumber, and this punchy print adds some much-needed life to your recipient boudoir threads. Sure, the top alone costs a pretty penny, but think about it this way: add a pair of boyfriend jeans and this top can easily be worn during awake hours.
Charlotte Tilbury "The Supermodel" Set, $245: For most tastemakers, an interest in fashion and beauty go hand in hand. After all, radiant skin and perfectly coiffed hair are the ultimate finishing touches to any well-edited ensemble. While the British makeup guru has several makeup sets for every girl -- "the Bombshell" and "the Sophisticate" are just two examples -- "the Supermodel" set is perfect for anyone who wants to adopt an effortless glam makeup regime. And since nobody wants to look like they caked on pounds of foundation, we like to think this kit is suited for everyone. If the bevy of products for lips, eyes and face doesn't impress her, she will definitely adore the cute lipstick marked case. 
Victoria, Victoria Beckham Cropped Mid-Rise Flare Jeans, $395: Sure, giving your resident queen of chic smart, versatile pieces is a safe option; however, there are loads of trends that she probably loves but would never buy for herself. Case in point: statement denim. From patchwork to innovative silhouettes, denim has gotten a lot more exciting over the past few seasons. Breathe some much-needed life into her denim game with this affordable pair by Victoria, Victoria Beckham. From the refreshing shape to the quirky coloring, one thing's for sure: these are a lot cooler than your run of the mill skinny jeans. Whether she pairs this with an oversized turtleneck or a simple T-shirt, these pants will be stylish all year round.
Fornasetti Chess and Card Set, $1,085When finding particularly chic clothes and accessories fails, find something that will add some style for your giftee's home. While that ultra-soft cashmere throw and printed pillow are great options, they tend to be a bit predictable. This year, think outside of the box with this game set from Fornasetti. While it's not the cheapest option, this set blends practicality and entertainment with a surrealist flair that will look great on your recipient's coffee table when idle. And with a set of dice, cards, chess and checker pieces, the virtually endless gaming options will bring your giftee and her loved ones together for hours. And isn't that priceless?

Malone Souliers Veronica Suede and Leather Flats, $547: Gone are the days when trendsetters were forced to sport five-inch stilettos on a daily basis. Thanks for several footwear phenomenons including Alessandro Michele's fur-lined loafers at Gucci and Adidas's ubiquitous Stan Smith silhouette, having your heels are on the ground is in. Whether your fashionable recipient has a penchant for heels or for flats, she's going to love these kicks from cult favorite Malone Souliers. The technical strap work makes these just as fancy as a pair of heeled sandals while tiny wooden heel will make these comfortable for even the fussiest fashionista. Plus, the versatile colorway will have your giftee wearing these well after the new year .

What will you get your fashion girl this year? Sound off below.

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

The Trendologist Gift Guide 2015: The Millennial

Finding gifts for your nearest and dearest (let alone those frenemies you drew from a Secret Santa picking) is hard. Securing actually stylish presents? Even harder. Welcome to the annual Trendologist Gift Guide, the chicest guide to finding presents for those super niche people in your life.

Since the dawn of selfies, you've had a love-hate relationship with millennial. Sure, they're basically fluent in emoji, but the number of likes they have on their Instragrams (compared to your measly 20 likes) is really frustrating. Wrapping up a selfie stick seems appropriate for this type of giftee, but let's face it: they probably already have a few. So what are 21st century-friendly tokens are you supposed to get them? Behold: presents that will make your youth culture-obsessed friend say "OMG."

Del Toro #TrophyWife Slippers, $325: Millennial girls love emojis. All females -- regardless of age -- love shoes. The happy medium? Shoes adorned with emojis, naturally. Made in Italy, this velvet pair will simultaneously add luxury and some energy into your giftee's ensemble.  Not to mention that these flats are finished with quality details like wooden heels and grosgrain ribbon piping, which means that these are shoes your recipient will wear until emojis are no longer popular (a.k.a. until the end of time). And no matter your recipient's level of feminism, she won't be offended by the bridal theme: marrying a rich and ambitious man (or woman) has alway in her plan. Can we say #girlboss? 

Zero Gravity Gold Mirror Case, $32: You love your token millennial, but her texting addiction is past the point of return. Case in point? She is that girl who always leaves her phone out when you two are grabbing dinner, not to mention she'll flip her phone over to check her notifications every 20 minutes. Well if she's going to keep her phone out, you might as well get her a luxe case. This gilded pick from Zero Gravity is eye-catching enough that you'll also be glued to her phone, and the glitzy hue will add a jolt of energy to any surface. As an added bonus, she can avoid tapping her phone into selfie mode when she's reapplying her lipstick.

Vector Smartwatch, $399: Because manual watches are so-yesteryear. Relatively new to the US market, this smartwatch from Vector will have all your millennial's onlookers curious. And since making your gift's benefactor a trendsetter is a present in itself, consider this a win. The exterior looks like any old chronograph, but in reality? This pick boasts a 30-day battery life and is compatible with your smartphone (Apple, Android or Microsoft). Plus, it's wallet-friendly price will give your giftee the look of a Patek or Omega without the sticker shock.

Kelly Wearstler "Hashtag" Necklace, $1,595: Jewelry is a typical gift to get any style-conscious woman, but pieces with a hashtag? Not so much. Though pricey, your youth-obsessed recipient will go crazy for this necklace.  Courtesy of accessories/interior Kelly Wearstler, this bling features dozens of champagne-hued melee diamonds, which gives you some definite bang for your buck. And whether matched with minimalist cocktail dress or a T-shirt and jeans combo, this frosting can definitely be dressed up or down. When your recipient opens this present, provide her with some fun trivia: the hashtag used to be called the "pound" or "number" symbol.
Charlotte Olympia Feline iPhone 6 Case, $325: If you think about it, it seems a bit silly to trot around a large bag in 2015. Because as much as you'd like to deny it, you have everything you need in your phone. Camera? Check. Wallet? Thank you, Apple Wallet. Games to play when you're stuck on the subway? Candy Crush, obviously. Finished with a delicate gold chain, this iPhone slot can easily double as a small satchel. This one's calf grained leather is sure to protect your phone in cold weather and dramatic drops, plus the embossed cat is too adorable to resist.
Selfish  by Kim Kardashian-West, $13: Anyone who had a smartphone before they graduated high school knows how to take a selfie. So why get them this book, you ask? Because if Kim Kardashian-West is the reigning Queen of Selfies, don't her subjects need to pay their respects? Filled with private, Insta-famous and even some XXX selfies, this photo book will double as a chic addition to her coffee table or bookshelf.
Mobile Lens Set, $34: Unlike Facebook, Instagram is not just a mere social media platform for millennials: it's an art form. And sometimes, that dinky iSight camera just won't do. Sigh. Luckily, this kit will satisfy all shutterbugs' needs by featuring the essentials: a wide-angle lens, macro lens, fisheye lens, universal clip and handy storage pouch.While the verdict is out on whether or not they'll give you partial credit for their latest photo series, you'll be satisfied by knowing that you gave them the gift that keeps on giving: Instagram likes, of course.

Ted Baker 'Sue' Suede Tech Gloves, $135: God forbid a Millennial forgoes texting outside even on the chilliest of days. Since your youth guru didn't put "frostbite" on her wishlist, a pair of tech-friendly gloves are both a stylish accessory and  necessity. Not only is this suede pair from Ted Baker extremely chic and versatile, they are also treated so your recipient can text the winter away (while staying warm). Plus, the copper-colored button gives this tactile pair a fun twist.
Emoji Girl Charm Bracelet, $25 When Emoji footwear is just not enough symbols for your giftee, get her this. Cheaper than a bracelet made by jewelry heavyweights, this bangle from Emoji Girl is a cheery (and unapologetically 2015) addition to her ever-growing wrist party. Customers can choose between a gold and silver bangle, and then up to three emoji charms of their choosing. We're still waiting for the taco emoji charm, but your recipient will be able to sport smileys, peace signs and everyone's favorite hair flip face. (Photo Courtesy of Igsta)

What are you getting your millennial giftee this year? Sound off below.